Advanced Certificate in Applied Horticulture

Gain the skills to run a business or build a career in horticulture. Excellent starting point for school leavers or career changers, seeking to become a horticulture professional.

Course CodeVHT079
Fee CodeAC
Duration (approx)900 hours
QualificationAdvanced Certificate

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Develop Skills for a Variety of Roles

Prepare yourself for a range of potential jobs and careers in horticulture by studying this broad-based course.

Sometimes people choose very narrow or focused courses of study which could limit the opportunities that are open to them. This course is designed to provide a wide spectrum of skills and knowledge so that students are able to apply what they learn to different tasks and positions.

An extensive LEARNING PROGRAM in HORTICULTURE - Study Online

Learn the skills needed to grow and identify over 1,000 different plants; and build a successful career or business as a professional horticulturist.

  • Start any time; and study at your own pace.

  • Relevant to all horticultural sectors in both amenity and production horticulture.

  • Learn from a team of professionals with decades of experience; in both Australia and the UK. This gives you a very unique and practical education, from people who actually work in the industry, as well as being teachers. Many of our teaching staff still also operate their own successful horticultural businesses.

  • We've been educating horticulturists across Australia, and around the world, since 1979; and have helped thousands forge a successful business or career in the industry. 

  • Let us help you to be our next success story.

For further details on each of the modules in this course, follow the links in the Modules section below.



Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Advanced Certificate in Applied Horticulture.
 Garden Maintenance VHT100
 Horticulture I BHT101
 Horticulture III (Plant Health) BHT116
 Plant Selection And Establishment BHT107
 Workshop I BGN103
 Horticultural Resource Management BHT203
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 3 of the following 36 modules.
 Botany I (Plant Physiology And Taxonomy) BSC104
 Horticultural Research I BHT118
 Horticulture II (Plant Knowledge) BHT102
 Landscape Construction BHT111
 Landscaping I BHT109
 Nursery Growers Course VHT101
 Nursery Hands Course VHT102
 Nursery Sales Assistant VHT103
 Outdoor Plant Production (Crops I) BHT112
 Permaculture I VSS104
 Propagation I BHT108
 Research Project I BGN102
 Soil Management (Horticulture) BHT105
 Turf Care BHT104
 Botany II (Plant Growth and Development) BSC204
 Hydroponics I BHT224
 Irrigation (Gardens) BHT210
 Permaculture Systems BHT201
 Planning Layout And Construction Of Ornamental Gardens BHT242
 Plant Breeding BHT236
 Plant Pathology BHT206
 Plant Protection BHT207
 Practical Horticulture 1 BHT238
 Practical Horticulture 2 BHT238
 Protected Plant Production BHT223
 Research Project II BGN201
 Restoring Established Ornamental Gardens BHT243
 Seed Propagation BHT237
 Weed Control BHT209
 Wholesale Nursery Management BHT212
 Horticultural Marketing BHT304
 Irrigation Management (Horticultural) BHT305
 Managing Notable Gardens BHT340
 Plant Ecology BSC305
 Turf Repair And Renovation BHT303
 Water Gardening BHT307

Note that each module in the Advanced Certificate in Applied Horticulture is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.

Stage 1 Core Studies
Exemption is granted for this stage to anyone who has the following:

Any Certificate or Advanced Certificate from ACS.

Horticultural studies of 600 hours or more class contact duration from another approved institution (Approved institutions include universities and institutions with a teaching approach that have a strong emphasis upon foundation science and plant knowledge).

Stage II Electives

Other options may be considered, though the above are generally considered the better options for this particular course.


You can design your own learning program with us.

This is a unique and very flexible opportunity that is not offered by many other schools

Use our Free Course Advice Service to find out how -click here.


Horticulture involves “growing plants with a known purpose”.  The purpose may be obvious (eg. food, decoration); but it could also be more obscure, such as filtering pollutants from the air, reducing the negative effects of storms, or creating an environment that is friendly to people or animals.

The broad scope of horticulture means that there are many different industry offshoots including, but not limited to:

  • Landscaping Gardens and other areas

  • Cut Flower Production

  • Floristry

  • Indoor Plantscaping

  • Home gardens

  • Turf

  • Forestry

  • Plant Nursery Production

  • Garden Centre Retailing

  • Allied Trades -manufacturing and supplying hardware, equipment, machinery

  • Providing education, media, consulting or other services

  • Fruit and Nut production

  • Mushroom production

  • Growing Vegetables or Herbs

  • Oil production (cooking oils, perfumes etc)

  • Medicinal plants

  • Fuel crops (bio-fuels)

  • Horticultural Therapy

  • Soil improvement crops – for production of composts, fertility supplements, etc.

Careers in Horticulture will Always be With Us -but they may change

The world is changing fast; and we know 50% of all jobs today are under threat from new technologies like robotics and computerization.  This is evident in all aspects of life, in business, in industry, and in our personal lives. Almost every week we are offered new and more sophisticated technology to help us communicate or to perform common tasks. The horticulture industry too has not been exempt in this evolution; plant propagation, plant care, harvesting techniques, growing systems, the way we care for golf courses and parks and even our approach to home gardening, have all changed dramatically over recent decades. These changes will continue as new techniques and new technologies are formulated and introduced.

For a sustainable career in horticulture, you need to recognise the inevitability of change. You must be able to adapt and excel, embracing and taking advantage of change. To achieve this, your knowledge and skills in horticulture must be broad based. If you understand the fundamental skills needed - across all sectors of horticulture - you will be able to see opportunities as they arise and confidently move from one sector to another, throughout your career. As an example,  anyone with underpinning knowledge of plant science and plant cultural practices:  plant growth and identification, soil management, pruning and pest control and the associated technologies,  will be able to work in landscaping for a few years, then move to turf management or nursery production and later work in crop production. 

Sound, broad-based training in the fundamentals of horticulture is a good starting point for entering this industry. However, not all courses on offer will be broad enough or in-depth enough to set you up for a sustainable, lifelong career – so you need to understand the fundamentals required in horticulture (in general) and then choose a diverse course, that enables you to achieve these aims.


  • We've been teaching horticulture since 1979 -we've helped tens of thousands around the world. We can help you.

  • Support from a team of a dozen horticulturists, in three countries including some of the industries leading experts. The principal John Mason is the only person to have been made a fellow by both the Australian Institute of Horticulture, and the UK Institute of Horticulture. Long time tutor, Dr Lyn Morgan is one of the world's leading hydroponic experts. Gavin Cole has worked in landscaping across both Australia and the UK, and was operations manager for one of England's most prestigious landscape companies. Maggi Brown is a life member of Garden Organic in the UK, and one of England's most respected organic gardening experts. Bob James has over 50 years of experience in horticulture as a consultant, local government manager, university lecturer, nurseryman, permaculturist, and more.

  • Above all; our courses are unique, and they work. They take longer to complete than certificates in some colleges; but our graduates learn more, and because there are lots of choices throughout the course; every graduate will have a different mix of knowledge and skills to everyone else -as well as all of the basics that everyone needs to learn. This uniqueness sets our graduates apart from the crowd, and that gives you an edge on everyone else. 


Why Study This Course?

The course provides a solid foundation in all the key areas of horticulture which are needed for entry into a broad range of jobs in horticulture. On top of that it provides insight into higher end horticultural skills.

This course is ideally suited to people working in, or hoping to work in:

  • Horticulture management

  • Propagation & nursery work

  • Conservation & restoration of historical gardens

  • Public gardens

  • Botanic gardens

  • Horticulture research

  • Horticulture consultation



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Marie Beermann

Marie has more than 10 years experience in horticulture and education in both Australia and Germany. Marie's qualifications include B. Sc., M. Sc. Hort., Dip. Bus., Cert. Ldscp.
Rosemary Davies

Leading horticultural expert in Australia. Rosemary trained in Horticultural Applied Science at Melbourne University. Initially she worked with Agriculture Victoria as an extension officer, taught horticulture students, worked on radio with ABC radio (c
Jacinda Cole

B.Sc., Cert.Garden Design. Landscape Designer, Operations Manager, Consultant, Garden Writer. He was operations manager for a highly reputable British Landscape firm (The Chelsea Gardener) before starting up his own landscaping firm. He spent three year
Robert James

B.App. Sc. (Horticulture), Dip.Ag., M.Sc., Grad Dip.Mgt. Over 50 years experience that includes, Nursery Manager Brisbane City Councoil, Grounds Manager (University of Qld), Lecturer Qld Agricultural College, Propagator/Nurseryman at Aspley Nursery, Hort
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